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A Guide to Reading More

Hello readers! Today’s post is something I have done before, but it was almost a year ago now. I get the question a lot as a person who reads way more than your average joe. How do you read so much? I have read 150 books this year so far, which is much, much more than in previous years.

I wanted to share with you how I read so much. I am a LAZY reader and if I didn’t do all these, I wouldn’t read much at all. I know how hard it can be to prioritize reading, but we can only do our best.

Pair audio with print

Do you ever find yourself having trouble reading because there is so much on your mind? I swear, sometimes I sit down to read my book and I think about all the household chores I could be doing.

HOWEVER, it really helps me if I get the audiobook and listen while I read with my eyes. When I do that, I am concentrating two senses on the same task and it’s much harder to break consentration on my book.

Take a book with you everywhere you go

This can be of any format. It is much easier to carry an audiobook on your phone or a kindle book, but physical books work, too. When you are riding in a vehicle, you can read. When you are at an appointment waiting, you can read. You can even read during breaks or lunches. Even if you only get 5-10 minutes here and there, it all adds up.

Reward yourself

Here is one of the biggest issues I see people face, including myself. Social media is something most of us LOVE. I love watching YouTube and scrolling through Twitter as much as the next person. I am not the kind of person who can sit and read for an hour or two at a time.

What I do is, I will reward my reading with screen time. I’ll find a YouTube video I want to watch. For every 10 minutes of the video, I have to read 1 chapter, 2 if the chapters are short. You could even do this with Tik Tok, Instagram, Twitter, etc. Four 20 minute videos later and you’ve read 8 chapters in a book. 8 chapters can be almost 100 pages.

Participate in the book community

There are so many ways one can participate in the book community. Of course, the best way is by making your own content, be it on WordPress, on Booktube, Tik Tok, Bookstagram, etc. BUT there are different ways, too! You can read along with book clubs, watch reading sprints on Booktube, join a bookish Disord, you name it.

When you are reading with other people, it makes it much more fun and motivating to do! I participate in a few book clubs, including my very own. I love reading books alongside others that I probably wouldn’t have ever read by myself. Earlier this year, I joined a thriller book club. They made me read Riley Sager’s new book, even though I had sworn the author off. This is even documented in my post Authors I’m Giving Up On. Nevertheless, I read it with everyone and really enjoyed it! I NEVER would’ve picked that book up on my own, but it was fun to read alongside the group.

Track what you read

If you are one of those people who like analytics, which most readers are, tracking what you read can be easy and helpful. I personally have a tracker where I can track all the books I’ve read, the books I’ve bought, my entire TBR, the pages I read every day, and much more. I used to use Book Riot’s spreadsheet but made my own for 2021 and 2022.

It’s really rewarding to put in my page count every day. I have managed to read every single day this year except for 45 days. I never would’ve done that if not for my tracker. I currently track it in my spreadsheet but have done it in a BUJO in previous years.

Another thing you can track is tropes and things you like and don’t like. When you read a book, write down some things or tropes you liked or didn’t like. You can then learn your reading taste and find more of what you like. If you enjoy the friends to lovers trope, you could easily google said trope and find a list someone has made of books with that trope.

I personally hate open endings, so I go out of my way to look up lists of books with open endings. This way, I can avoid reading those books. Sometimes one slips in, but I can filter out so many.

Pick up a new book before bed

If I finish a book late in the day, I will make myself pick a new book and read one or two chapters. If I wait to pick up a new book until the next day, it will most likely take the ENTIRE day for me to decide what to read next, which heavily cuts into reading time.

DNF everything

I sometimes pick up 2 or 3 books before one sticks. Of course, DNFing makes you read less books you don’t like. You can even just put a book down until another day. Sometimes we are just not in the mood for that certain book.

Let’s say you really aren’t enjoying your book, BUT still want to know the ending. This happens to me all the time, mostly with thrillers. Go to your search bar on WordPress, Goodreads, or Booktube and find 4 or 5 spoiler reviews. One is bound to tell you the ending. The ending is not worth reading 200 more pages of that book.

Switch it up

I cannot read the same genre over and over. I will get burnt out on any genre after 2 or 3 books in a row. In the past year, I have learned to follow my gut. Your brain will let you know if it can handle one more fantasy book before it quits, or if you need to read something else. I commonly read 5-8 different genres every month.

Be more consistant

I used to be one of those readers that read 10 books in a month and then didn’t read anything for 3 months over and over. I think I was just binging too much of the same thing. In 2020 and 2021, I haven’t gone an entire month without reading one book, at the very least.

The left photo is my reading in 2018 versus 2020 on the right!

I would skip so many months of reading! I recommend trying to read one book a month, at the very least. I genuinley think what made me read more in 2020 was reading more consistantly. You don’t have to read every single day, but 1 book a month is totally obtainable for most.

Don’t force it!

Please, please, please do not force yourself to read certain books because they are popular or are classics. I don’t care who tells you to. They are WRONG. If you wanna read exclusively smut, you do it! If you don’t like popular authors like Stephen King, Sarah J. Maas, etc, don’t read them.

If you read a classic and you didn’t like it, don’t let a classics buff talk down to you and tell you that you didn’t get the book. You don’t have to get it. Read what you like and dont apoligize for it.

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